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Phillies Stat Notes: Slumping Bats Slide to Third in East

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The Phils have averaged only 2.9 runs scored in their last eight games.

In dropping the opener of the Dodgers’ series on Monday, the Phillies have now lost back-to-back games for the first time since losing four straight on April 28 through May 1st.

That also dropped them to third in the NL East, and the fourth best record in the NL overall.

Standings

The Nationals have won four in a row and six out of seven to move into second place in the NL East, a half game out of first, and and a half game ahead of the Phillies.

The Dodgers meanwhile are 3 12 games behind Colorado, despite a pythagorean projection that is 4 12 games better than that of the Rockies.

Batting

Their recent slump has dropped the Phillies to the middle of the pack in overall hitting: 7th in wOBA (.312), 9th in wRC+ (95).

However they are still hanging on to 4th in the NL in scoring (4.47 runs per game).

Most key stats have dipped recently — batting average is now 11th (.236), and so even with the league-leading walk rate (10.5%), OBP is now down to 6th best (.320).

Home runs (7th) and the more general Isolated Power (ISO)* (8th) are in the middle of the pack.

*ISO, short for Isolated power, is the difference between batting average and slugging percentage, and essentially measures the average extra bases per at bat (1 for a double, 2 for a triple, 3 for a HR).

Below are some additional stats on plate discipline and batted ball quality:

The first of those shows that the Phillies (with high walks, and high Ks) are about average in BB/K ratio. The next set of four are plate discipline stats from fangraphs. The Phils have been good about not chasing outside the zone (28.0%, 3rd lowest), but they also don’t swing very much in the zone (65.3%, 11th highest). Their ratio of Z-Swing to O-Swing is better than average, ranking 5th in the NL (2.33 “bad” swings for each good one).

However when they do swing, the Phillies are dead last in making contact (on 74.0% of their swings).

The next two are from fangraphs’ Batted Ball stats on quality of contact, and the Phillies are at or near the bottom in both their line drive percentage, and their Hard hit ball rate.

“Bases Taken%” below is calculated as the number of times bases are taken on fly balls, wild pitches, or passed balls, as a percentage of the team’s total baserunners. The Phils are second in the NL in the number of bases taken, but lead the league in bases taken as a percentage of times on base (by hit, walk, or HBP).

Below is the team’s progress on various key metrics: Batting Average and BB% together drive a team’s On Base Percentage, and Batting Average and ISO combine to form Slugging Percentage. Also shown is a dotted line showing the NL average for each stat.

Batting average has again dipped below the NL’s overall average of .242. Walk rate has been dipping (it was 9.0% in May, same as the NL average for the month), but still leads the league.

ISOlated Power is slightly above the NL’s average for the season to date.

Batting — Individual

The two colorful columns in the middle below compare each hitter to the average OPS at that position: first the average at the position for last year’s Phillies, and then for last year’s NL average at the position.

There are a lot of red numbers for the past seven days, with only Santana hitting well, and Franco and Williams holding their own. Kingery is also showing signs of life over the last week or two.

Herrera’s batting average has dipped to .332, currently 5th in the NL.

Below is how each Phillie hitter’s OPS and wOBA have progressed over time.

Another One Bites the Dust

Cesar Hernandez‘s On Base streak was snapped at 28 games on Saturday, and for now at least the Phillies have the two longest streaks of the season (Herrera also had four games at the end of 2017):

The TigersJeimer Candelario is up to 22 games through yesterday.

Pitching

Like their reign in first place, their ERA lead didn’t last long for the Phillies. However in the case of the ERA race it was mostly a case of other teams doing especially well. Since Friday:

  • the Diamondbacks have allowed 11 earned runs in 4 games
  • the Cubs have allowed 10 in 4 games
  • the Nationals have allowed 7 in 4 games

*FIP (Fielding-independing pitching) is based only on the stats that are considered to be most controllable by pitchers: strikeouts, walks, and home runs. xFIP takes that one step further by also assuming that home runs are only controllable by a pitcher to the extent to which they allow fly balls to be hit, and adjusts their HRs to the league-average rate of HRs per Fly Balls.

Pitching - Individual

Below is a high-level break down of each starter’s games: QS is the typical definition (6+ IP, 3 or less ER), “bad” is any start with more ER than innings pitched, and “other” is all the rest:

And below are each pitcher’s games, with the Game Score for each one on the right (highlighted green if in the 60-79 range, dark green if 80+):

References

Phillies hitters (fangraphs)
Phillies pitchers (fangraphs)
Team hitting stats (fangraphs)
Team pitching stats (fangraphs)
Team stats (baseball-reference)